Project cargo throughput up at Port of Newcastle despite a challenging 2022
The Port of Newcastle in the New South Wales, Australia, reported strong throughput across the board, despite the impact of multiple flood events associated with a multi-year La Niña.
CEO Craig Carmody said the results are testament to the Port’s resilience during one of the wettest years in recent memory. “In the first half of 2022 the Hunter experienced five flood events, which had implications across the supply chain,” he said.
“Unsurprisingly this contributed to an overall decrease in total import/export trade volumes and ship visits through the Port compared to 2021, handling 145 million tonnes of cargo and recording 4261 vessel movements in 2022,” Carmody said, noting that the deployment of the dredger David Allan and sweeper vessel Lydia helped reduce the impacts of the floods and return the channel to its designed depth.
Overall trade volume drops, value up
Overall, trade volumes slipped 13 percent, however, the trade value jumped 93 percent, reaching $71.3 billion.
Executive manager of business development Matthew Swan said despite the challenges of 2022, the Port continued to see strong trade volumes across a number of key export commodities.
“Meals and grain exports, predominately to China, Japan, and Pakistan recorded a 56 percent year on year increase, buoyed by a rise in the export of sorghum, barley and canola, with 479,000 tonnes shipped through the port in 2022,” Swan said.
Project cargo throughput rising in Port of Newcastle
“Port of Newcastle continued to support major projects in the region with roll on roll off and project cargo including wind turbine components for the Rye Park Wind Farm, rail wagons for the Sydney Metro project as well as grain and coal haulers, equipment for the Snowy 2.0 Kurri Power Station, and mining equipment for customers in the Hunter Valley,” Swan said.
The port noted that over 2022, 160,000 tons of general cargo were handled, jumping 110 percent compared to the volumes handled in 2021.
The 2022 trade figures come at an exciting time for Port of Newcastle as it takes significant steps forward in its diversification. “2023 will be an important year for the Port and our commitment to build a container terminal in Newcastle,” Carmody said.
“Once the valuation process for the Port of Newcastle Extinguishment of Liability Act is complete, we look forward to a future where businesses right across the Hunter, Western and Northern NSW can import and export their product through the Port more efficiently and cost effectively,” Carmody added.
He further noted that the port is taking steps to develop a dedicated clean energy precinct that will see the Hunter become a hub for the development production and export of green energy like hydrogen.